Tag Archives: Writer’s Block

Changing the Murder in a Murder Mystery: The Beauty of Starting Over

Okay.

We need to talk.

A real talk about being a writer.

Sometimes, you just need to start over.

Which is what I’ve decided to do. Well, for the most part.

I’m starting my story over.

Let Me Explain

For the past couple of months, I’ve been trying to write a novel. Trying being the key word. It’s a mystery story about a Detective and his assistant, set in the 1920s.

These characters and setting have been on my mind for years. Back in fiction writing class, I offered my short story, featuring the detective and the 20s, to be critiqued by my fellow classmates. Although my work was much different than my peers, I received many positive comments. I’m not bragging that my writing is genius, but that positivity gave me encouragement to keep at it.

When I graduated, I was on my own, to write what I please. To be the author I always dreamed I’d become. Frankly, I struggled. With this newfound freedom came fear, fear of the unknown. What kind of story do I write? What genre? Then, I remembered my mystery story from class. I enjoyed writing detective fiction. And I thought to myself, why not just expand the 10 page story I wrote into a novel? Seemed plausible, at the time.

Honestly, I was having a tough time. Every time I tried to write something, it was like walking through quicksand. This was different than ordinary writer’s block. I felt stuck. The more I tried to work on it, the more tangled I felt.

I’ll admit, I grew depressed. I was a writer not writing. I lost all motivation. Writing just lost it’s magic. For months, I had this gut feeling that huge parts of the plot needed to changed in order to create an even greater story. Even though I’m afraid of change, I have to rework the entire plot line, for it’s own good.

What Exactly is Changing

So, here’s what’s happening. Major construction and reconstruction.

I’m my opinion, I have great characters. I think, if I do them justice, they can be really special fictional characters. It’s not the characters that need changing, it’s the plot itself. The pieces were playing the wrong game. Does that make sense?

What I want to change, what I NEED to change, is the center of the plot itself. The murder in the murder mystery. The case connecting all these characters together, the case my detective would solve, had to be revamped. Kicked up a notch, I supposed you could say.

Originally, my detective story was centered around an actress who had been shot with a not so fake gun while on stage. Then, I recognized that the murder in my murder mystery was cliche. I didn’t realize how much of a trope my idea was. While having a trope or a cliches in a story is fine, I didn’t want to write something that’s been done a bunch of times. Fiction shouldn’t be predictable.

Why I’m Sharing My Setback

While writing is an art, it isn’t always roses. I want to share my ups and downs, as a writer, with full honesty. That’s what the Lady Jabberwocky blog is about. If my experience as a writer has an impact on another writer’s life, then maybe sharing my set back will be worth it.

I’m not starting from scratch completely. Some scenes from the original story line can be salvaged and used in the new story line. Characters, for the most part, will remain the same. Sometimes, you need to take a step back and rework elements of a story in order to become better.

I’m happy. And excited to create a story again. A new story. Hopefully, get those creative juices going again. Challenging stereotypes and cliches and tropes always made me write better. It’s what got me writing in the first place.

I’m erasing the drawing board and starting again, and that’s okay.

Never feel discouraged just because of a step backwards. Writing is a process. It’s also a journey and a real adventure. You will eventually arrive at your destination, even if you took a few detours along the way.

Write with Heart,

Lady Jabberwocky

How A Writer Prepares For An All-Nighter

Okay.

I have two assignments for work due by midnight.

I have some serious writer’s block.

I got a 99 cents bag of chips. I got a half full water bottle. For nourishment.

Newsies soundtrack playing. For inspiration.

Crack neck and fingers. Sweatpants and messy writer’s bun, engage!

Ready to go into battle. There’s some major BSing about to happen.

Let’s Friggin’ Do This!

 

(Sometimes, you just need to pep talk yourself)

Write with Heart,

Lady Jabberwocky

 

The 5 Causes of Writer’s Block

Writer’s block happens to every writer at one point or another. It may be a fog over your thoughts, or an inability to focus or just drawing an utter blank. Today, we are going to identify what can interrupt the writing process. It goes beyond a lack of ideas.

Not The Right Time

Sometimes, a story can be like beef stew. Listen to the Puerto Rican for a second, okay? Your ideas may need more time to develop, to bubble and boil on the stove. Perhaps it’s not the right time to write, don’t lift the lid of the pot. You still need to actively brainstorm your ideas until they feel solid and clear in your mind. There’s a thin line between stewing and procrastinating.

Fear

Fear. Self Doubt. That voice that all writers have in their head that constantly remind them of failure or how bad their writing is. “Everything I’m writing is trash! I’m a terrible writer”. That fear will prevent you from telling a story that’s meant to be told.

Trying to be Perfect

You are striving for perfection. Your expectations are high. It’s difficult to achieve perfection before actually putting pen to paper. First drafts, even seconds drafts, aren’t even near being perfect.

Distracted 

You’re too distracted. There’s always something going on in all of our lives. Work, school, spouse, kids, illness. Life happens. Desks get cluttered, brains get full. You’re juggling too much at the moment and your work of fiction takes the back burner.

Unmotivated

Lack of motivation. Loss of passion. The emotional fuel take is low. Even just flat-out laziness. Sometimes, when things feel cloudy, our internal spark has to be reignited.


Getting to the root of the problem may help you find the answer to fix it.

Next post…. How to beat writer’s block. Stay tuned!

What does writer’s block feel like to you? Let me know in the comments.

Write with Heart,

Lady Jabberwocky

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